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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Man on Fire


Credit: Larisa Robinson

The Human Fuse, and the entire Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey family, are in town with the circus this week.
By Larisa Robinson
from: richmond.com
April 19, 2011
Richmond, VA--At this year’s Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey, which starts this week in Richmond, the Human Fuse prepares, shoots and soars after he’s purposely lit on fire.
Brian Miser is known to the Ringling Bros. family and fans as the Human Fuse, or the Human Cannonball. Every show, he wows an audience with his high-flying, Phoenix-like act as he’s shot from a cannon. Miser flies over 100 feet in the air, at almost 65 miles per hour at a jolt that’s seven times the force of gravity…all while on fire.
When Miser first began his cannon act with the Ringling Bros. eight years ago, he didn’t include the fire element.
"From the audience perspective, this is a lot more exciting," Miser said. "You can’t find the reaction I get from the people anywhere else but at the Ringling Bros."
Although Miser knows the danger behind his work, fear is what motivates him.
"I get a little bit nervous, but it’s an excited nervous feeling," Miser said. "I like having a little fear and being pushed to face it over and over again."
Miser was born in Peru, in, a city sometimes called the "Circus Capital of the World." Peru served as winter quarters for many circus troupes in the early 1900s. It also served as the city where Miser and his three brothers performed together in amateur circus acts.
Miser was young when he got his first gig with the Ringling Bros. In fact, he was hired the same day he graduated high school.
"That was my life’s dream," Miser said. "I was very lucky to get it."
Now, after being shot out of a cannon 6,000 times within 14 years, Miser has advice for up-and-coming circus performers.
"It’s a lot harder work than most people think is to it," Miser said. "But if you stick with it, you’ll have fun."
Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey is in Richmond from Wednesday, April 20 to Sunday, April 24.

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